Mom Dying in Stands During Son's Soccer Game Won't Let Anyone Tell Him the News

Heartbreaking 8

soccerDo you ever ask yourself how far you'd go to make your child's dreams come true? Think about that while you read this story. A mom named Hiroyo Klink was in the stands at her 17-year-old son's championship soccer game when she suffered a stroke. She knew she was slipping away, but she insisted that no one tell her boy that she was dying.

Leo Klink ended up winning the state championship for his high school team that day. He scored all three goals for Kalani.

His mom died two days later but not before she'd heard from her husband that her son had won the game.

It's one of the most bittersweet stories I think I've ever read. Here this mom had to decide in moments what was more important to her: letting her son have his moment or having those last few moments with him by her side.

Could you decide? Even now, sitting here, healthy and safe?

I can't. But these are the questions every mother asks herself every day, isn't it, albeit with less extremes on the line? Do we put their needs first or our own?

How many times have you heard that motherhood is about sacrifice? Sacrificing our bodies. Sacrificing sleep. Sacrificing Thursday nights for soccer practice. Will it ever end?

Some days I feel more selfish than others. I just want her to stay in her bed so I can get some sleep! I just want her to choose between milk or orange juice so I can sit down and eat my dinner!

And then stories like these crop up and I feel ungrateful and pathetic. So I have to wait five minutes to shovel some mashed potatoes and peas in my mouth? Really? That's what I'm complaining about? Hiroyo Klink would have loved those five minutes with her son.

As movie director Peter Hedges reminded me in an interview awhile back when his movie Odd Life of Timothy Green was coming out, we don't own our children, they own us.

It's an important distinction, one that's easy to forget. Hiroyo Klink may have wanted her son by her side, and I don't think anyone would have blamed her for that. But her sacrifice was so powerful because she got it. She got that her son was a person, separate from her. She could have demanded they go get him off the field, but she allowed him to be his own person on that field.

We don't get to choose how we get our time with our kids. Some of it, yes, but most of the moments are guided by our children, by the little people who spend five minutes choosing the blue cup or the red cup. We just have to remember to appreciate them.

What's the biggest sacrifice you've made for your child?


Image via thebuffafamily/Flickr



To add a comment, please log in with

Use Your CafeMom Profile

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Join CafeMom or Log in to your CafeMom account. CafeMom members can keep track of their comments.

Comment As a Guest

Guest comments are moderated and will not appear immediately.

nonmember avatar Saoirse

Wow... May this precious lady rest in peace as the beautiful angel that she is to her family. I have a high school age premier soccer player and can only begin to understand. However, she made the ultimate sacrife by shielding her son. I only hope that he can still enjoy the soccer experience and love his mother gave to him. Peace and may God bless this child.

CPN322 CPN322

After reading the original article, I'm glad that he seems ok with how everyone handled everything. I personally would have rather spent the last coherant minutes with my mother than continue in the game and I'm very competitive.

fave82 fave82

Id rather have 5minutes with my dying mom than win a game... Id be pissed!

nicol... nicolemead91

yea id be pissed to. i think its really nice she didn't want him to stop his game but if that was me id really wanna be with my mother when she is dying! id have to pay my respects and tell her i love her, not playin soccer!

Blaze Hazen

I would give almost anything to have been given 5 minutes with my mom to say goodbye. I think this woman made the wrong choice, there are many chances to play a game but in this case it was his only chance to say goodbye.

nonmember avatar Trish

Obviously, this woman was very ill when she made that decision, but I agree with the other posters. She may have thought what was best for her son was to stay on the field, but the missed opportunity for a goodbye is tragic. Someone with a calmer head should have over ruled her. What a shame.

nonmember avatar Michelle

My dad died in his sleep. I didn't get to say goodbye and it haunts me. I would never do what she did because it isn't worth it. I would give anything to be able to have said goodbye, to give and hear those last assurances of love would mean everything to me. It's been nearly 2 years and still it eats away at me, I think it always will. Don't ever do that to your child. My dad, obviously had no choice but if you know you're dying don't steal thier last chance.

momof... momof1teengirl

Not being in her shoes, I cannot say what I would have done.  I hope that her son doesn't spend years thinking "I'd rather have been with my mom than playing soccer".  Guilt is a funny thing - even if we have nothing to feel guilty about, and it wasn't his choice, my guess is that wll pop into his head soon enough.  I think she meant well, but....  My husband died unexpectedly, shortlty after our daughter had left for school.  She had said goodbye (thinking it just for the day) and I love you as she went out the door.  She is very grateful that she was able to tell him she loved him, and he to her.


1-8 of 8 comments